Beauty queen claims higher partner standards by women can boost economy

By Linh Le   January 20, 2024 | 05:00 pm PT
Miss Sports Vietnam 2022 runner-up Le Phuong Thao has recently ignited a debate with her remarks on how Vietnam’s economy could benefit if women elevated their partner selection criteria.
Miss Sports Vietnam 2022 runner-up Le Phuong Thao. Photo from Thaos Facebook

Miss Sports Vietnam 2022 runner-up Le Phuong Thao. Photo from Thao's Facebook

Thao shared her views in a TikTok video on Wednesday, positing that men form a significant portion of Vietnam’s workforce. At the same time, an average man’s life goals often revolve around achieving financial success and winning over their desired partner.

She then pointed out that Vietnamese women are currently content marrying men who they rate as a five out of 10. She argued that if women collectively raised their expectations to prefer men who score an eight out of 10, for example, it would exert pressure on men.

According to the beauty queen, this would lead men to believe that achieving success and higher earnings to meet these enhanced standards are prerequisites for marriage.

Thao went on suggesting that such pressure would motivate men.

"They [men] will extend their work hours to 10 instead of the usual 8, and will exert all their efforts to secure multiple jobs rather than relying on a single job," she said.

She claimed that this increased effort from men would result in a more industrious workforce dedicated to enhancing Vietnam’s economy through both intellectual and physical contributions.

The beauty queen’s video has garnered varied reactions online.

"Her remarks suggest that women lack capability and are overly practical," one commenter expressed dismay on Thao’s TikTok account. "Why is the responsibility to provide for women consistently placed on men?"

Another accused Thao of encouraging women to "prioritize financial gain from men over personal development."

This is not Thao’s first encounter with public scrutiny over her statements. She previously stirred controversy in August last year with her support for women choosing to be "sugar babies."

Thao, 30, is a businesswoman and serves as a visiting lecturer at the HCMC University of Economics and Finance.

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